Safe Human Settlement Policy Initiative

Safe Human Settlement Policy Initiative

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Imaging Tool to Map Hazards

A recent article by the Washington (State) Geological Survey demonstrates the uses of Lidar (light detection and ranging) technology to map geological hazards. The article explains the process and illustrates its use with fascinating case studies involving hazards common to the Pacific Northwest:  Landslides and Volcanoes.  The article goes on to describe applications of the technology in locating fault lines, predicting tsunami inundation zones, and tracking the courses of rivers over time to predict flooding impact.  The process can also yield incredible images of sub-surface geology.

Clearly the benefits for applying the technology to hazard identification and mitigation are immeasurable.  Hopefully, it will also become a useful tool in educating and convincing policy makers and the general public to address the hazards in a real way.  Being able to target action and resources to more specific geographical locations will be a significant benefit to endangered communities.

Lidar image of the glaciers on Mt. Rainier. (From the Article)

The online, interactive article is well worth your time to read.

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